Preparing for your big day can be one of the most exciting times of your life. But with so many options for wedding dresses, it can be overwhelming to decide what will look best on you. Understanding your body shape is crucial in finding the perfect dress that will accentuate your best features and make you feel confident on your special day.
Each body type has its own unique features, and finding the right dress that fits your body shape can be the key to feeling and looking amazing. In this article, we’ll provide you with tips and tricks to help you find the perfect wedding dress that best suits your body shape.
Whether you’re an hourglass, apple, pear, athletic, or any other shape, there are wedding dresses designed to flatter your figure. So let’s dive in and help you find the perfect dress for your body shape!
Read on to discover your perfect wedding dress that will make you feel confident, beautiful, and ready to walk down the aisle!
Understand Your Body Shape
Before you begin shopping for your dream wedding dress, it is important to understand your body shape. Different dress styles complement different body types, and it’s important to know what works best for you. You can start by measuring your bust, waist, and hips to determine your body shape.
There are several different body shapes, including the hourglass, apple, pear, and athletic shapes. Each shape has its own unique characteristics and dressing guidelines, and knowing your shape will make it easier to find a dress that flatters your figure.
If you’re not sure what your body shape is, take a look in the mirror or try on a variety of clothing styles to see what looks best on you. You can also ask a friend or family member for their opinion, or consult a professional stylist for personalized advice.
Remember, the goal is to accentuate your best features and feel confident on your special day. Don’t be discouraged if a certain dress style doesn’t work for you – there are plenty of options out there that will look stunning on your unique body shape.
Now that you have a better understanding of your body shape, let’s take a look at some of the most popular wedding dress styles and how they complement different body types.
Identify Your Body Shape
Before you can find the perfect wedding dress for your body shape, you need to identify what body shape you have. This can be done by measuring your bust, waist, and hips with a measuring tape. Once you have your measurements, you can compare them to the standard body shapes: hourglass, apple, pear, and athletic.
Another way to identify your body shape is to stand in front of a mirror and look at your overall silhouette. Pay attention to your shoulders, bust, waist, hips, and thighs. You can also take a picture of yourself in tight-fitting clothes to get a better idea of your body shape.
- Hourglass: If your bust and hips are approximately the same size, and your waist is narrow, then you have an hourglass shape.
- Apple: If you carry most of your weight in your midsection, and have narrow hips and slim legs, then you have an apple shape.
- Pear: If your hips are wider than your shoulders, and you have a well-defined waist, then you have a pear shape.
- Athletic: If you have broad shoulders, a muscular build, and a straight waist, then you have an athletic shape.
- Rectangle: If your bust and hips are approximately the same size, and your waist is not well-defined, then you have a rectangle shape.
- Inverted Triangle: If your shoulders are broader than your hips, and you have a small waist, then you have an inverted triangle shape.
Identifying your body shape is the first step to finding the perfect wedding dress that will highlight your best features and flatter your body type.
Types of Wedding Dresses
Choosing a wedding dress that suits your body shape is important, but so is understanding the different types of wedding dresses available. Here are five of the most popular styles:
Ballgown: This classic style features a fitted bodice and a full skirt that flares out from the waist. It’s perfect for hourglass and pear-shaped bodies.
A-line: This style has a fitted bodice and a skirt that gradually widens towards the hem, creating an “A” shape. It’s versatile and flatters most body shapes.
Mermaid: This style is fitted through the bodice and hips, flaring out at the knees. It’s perfect for hourglass and athletic body shapes.
Sheath: This style is slim and form-fitting, with a straight skirt that falls from the hips. It’s perfect for petite and athletic body shapes.
Tea-length: This style features a skirt that falls between the knee and ankle, and is perfect for a casual or outdoor wedding.
A ball gown is a traditional wedding dress with a fitted bodice and a full skirt that falls to the floor. The skirt is usually made of tulle or a similar fabric and can be worn with a crinoline or petticoat to give it extra volume.
Best for: Ball gowns are best suited for brides who want to make a grand entrance and create a fairy-tale look on their wedding day. They are also ideal for formal or traditional weddings.
Not recommended for: Ball gowns are not recommended for petite brides as the full skirt can overwhelm a smaller frame.
Accessorizing: Pair a ball gown with a long veil, a sparkling tiara, and elegant jewelry to complete the look.
Popular styles: Classic ball gowns feature a strapless bodice, but other popular styles include off-the-shoulder, halter, and long-sleeved options.
Flattering: A-line dresses are universally flattering and look great on all body types, especially on those with a pear-shaped figure.
Features: An A-line dress has a fitted bodice that gradually flares out from the waistline, resembling the shape of the letter “A”.
Versatility: A-line dresses come in a variety of fabrics and can be styled with different necklines, sleeves, and embellishments to suit any bride’s taste.
Due to their versatility and flattering shape, A-line dresses are a popular choice among brides. The classic silhouette is perfect for those looking for an elegant and timeless look on their big day.
Dresses for Hourglass Shapes
Hourglass-shaped bodies are characterized by a well-defined waist and equal hip and bust measurements. If you have an hourglass shape, you want to show off your curves, and there are several wedding dress styles that can do just that.
The mermaid or trumpet dress is one such style. This dress hugs the body from the chest to the knee and then flares out, creating a dramatic look that accentuates your curves. Another great option is the sheath dress, which is form-fitting and emphasizes your waistline.
If you’re looking for something a bit more classic, consider an A-line dress. This style flares out gently from the waist and creates a balanced silhouette that highlights your curves without being too revealing.
Flaunt your curves with a mermaid dress that is fitted through the bodice, hips, and thighs and flares out at the bottom. This style is perfect for hourglass shapes who want to show off their curves.
When choosing a mermaid dress, consider the fabric. A stretchy material like lace or satin will hug your curves and accentuate your silhouette. A dress with a drop waistline will also elongate your torso, making you appear taller and slimmer.
For hourglass shapes who want to balance their curves, a mermaid dress with a detailed bodice or a flowy skirt can help create an overall balanced look.
A sheath wedding dress, also known as a column dress, has a slim and straight shape that follows the body’s natural silhouette. This style is perfect for brides with an hourglass, rectangular, or petite body shape as it accentuates the natural curves of the body.
The dress is made of lightweight fabric, making it comfortable to wear throughout the day. However, it can be unforgiving when it comes to hiding body imperfections, so it’s essential to select the right undergarments to achieve a seamless look.
Sheath dresses come in various styles, from simple and elegant to embellished and sophisticated. This style is perfect for outdoor weddings or beach weddings as it provides ease of movement and allows for a natural, flowing look.
A corset wedding dress is perfect for an hourglass figure as it accentuates your curves. The corset can be boned or unboned and made from a variety of materials such as silk, satin or lace. This style emphasizes the waist and provides support for the bust. The corset can be paired with a variety of skirt styles such as A-line, ball gown or mermaid.
When choosing a corset wedding dress, it’s essential to get the right fit. The corset should fit snugly and be comfortable to wear for extended periods. It’s also important to find a reputable tailor who can adjust the dress to fit perfectly. The corset style can be combined with a variety of materials and embellishments such as embroidery or beading.
Corset wedding dresses can come in a range of colors, including ivory, white, and blush. It’s important to choose a color that complements your skin tone and personal style. A corset wedding dress is an excellent option for brides who want to feel sexy and confident on their big day.
Dresses for Apple Shapes
If you have an apple body shape, it means that you carry most of your weight around your midsection. The best dresses for apple shapes are those that draw attention away from your waist and highlight your other features.
A-line dresses are a great choice for apple-shaped women as they flare out from the waist, creating a flattering silhouette. Look for styles with V-necks or scoop necks to elongate your torso and draw the eye upwards.
Empire waist dresses are also perfect for apple shapes as they cinch just below the bust, creating a flattering shape and highlighting your upper body. These dresses often have flowing skirts that can help to balance out your proportions.
If you want to draw attention to your arms and shoulders, strapless dresses can be a great option. Look for styles with boning in the bodice to provide extra support and help to define your shape.
Wrap dresses are another great option for apple-shaped women. The wrap style draws attention to your upper body and can help to create a defined waistline. Look for styles with a V-neckline and a flared skirt to balance out your proportions.
Tunic dresses are perfect for apple shapes as they are loose around the midsection and have a relaxed fit. Look for styles with a cinched waist or belt to create some definition, and pair them with leggings or tights to create a comfortable and stylish outfit.
Overview: An Empire Waist dress has a high waistline, just below the bust. The skirt then flows down, creating a long and flattering silhouette. This style is perfect for those with apple-shaped bodies.
Benefits: The high waistline helps to elongate the legs and create a longer, leaner look. The flowy skirt helps to camouflage any problem areas around the hips and waist.
Fabrics: Empire Waist dresses are usually made from light and flowy fabrics such as chiffon or silk, which add to the fluidity of the dress.
Accessories: Pair an Empire Waist dress with a statement necklace or earrings to draw attention to the neckline, and add some height with heels to further elongate the legs.
Occasions: An Empire Waist dress is versatile and can be worn to many occasions, such as weddings, proms, or formal events.
Flattering: A v-neckline can be very flattering for apple and pear-shaped figures as it elongates the neck and creates the illusion of a longer torso.
Versatile: This neckline can be incorporated into various dress styles, from casual to formal, and can work well with different fabrics and colors.
Accessories: A v-neckline allows for a variety of accessories to be worn, including necklaces and scarves, which can further enhance the overall look.
Overall, a v-neckline can be a great choice for those looking to accentuate their figure and add some variety to their wardrobe. Whether paired with statement jewelry or left understated, this neckline is sure to create a chic and timeless look.
An illusion dress is a unique and versatile style that creates the appearance of a sheer or lace fabric overlay on top of a solid base. This design is perfect for those who want to add a touch of elegance to their wardrobe while still feeling comfortable and confident. Here are some things to keep in mind when wearing an illusion dress:
- Choose the right fabric: The sheer fabric overlay on an illusion dress can be made from lace, tulle, or other materials. Choose a fabric that suits your taste and the occasion you plan to wear the dress to.
- Consider the color: The base color of the dress and the color of the sheer overlay can be the same or different. When selecting colors, consider your skin tone and what complements it best.
- Accessories: Illusion dresses look great with statement jewelry and a clutch bag. Avoid wearing a necklace that clashes with the neckline of the dress.
- Shapewear: As the dress is often form-fitting, consider wearing shapewear to smooth out any problem areas and create a flattering silhouette.
- Shoes: Nude or metallic heels are a great choice to pair with an illusion dress, but black heels can work well too depending on the color of the dress.
An illusion dress is a sophisticated and glamorous choice for any special occasion. Whether you choose a short or long style, this dress will turn heads and make you feel confident and beautiful.
Dresses for Pear Shapes
A-line: An A-line dress is a great choice for pear-shaped women as it flares out from the waist and creates a balanced silhouette. Look for dresses with fitted bodices to highlight your curves and flowing skirts to skim over your hips and thighs.
Wrap: A wrap dress is another excellent option for pear shapes as it cinches in at the waist and emphasizes the smallest part of your body. The wrap style is also very forgiving and can accommodate different hip and thigh sizes.
Off-the-shoulder: Off-the-shoulder dresses draw attention to your upper body and shoulders, balancing out your lower half. Choose dresses with a fitted bodice and flowing skirt to create an hourglass silhouette.
If you’re a pear shape, a drop waist dress can help balance out your proportions by elongating your torso and drawing attention to your waistline. A drop waist dress is defined by a waistline that falls below the natural waist and onto the hips.
Fit: Look for a dress that is fitted at the top and gradually flares out from the hips. Avoid dresses that are too loose or too tight around the hips, as they can create unflattering bulges.
Length: Choose a dress that falls just above or below the knee to show off your legs and avoid drawing attention to your hips.
- Fabric: Opt for a fabric that skims over your curves without adding bulk, such as silk or jersey. Avoid heavy fabrics, like brocade or taffeta, that can add volume to your hips.
- Details: Look for dresses with interesting details around the neckline or shoulders to draw attention upwards. Avoid dresses with details around the hips, as they can add extra bulk.
- Accessories: Complete your look with a pair of nude or black pumps and statement jewelry to draw attention upwards. Avoid wide belts or bulky handbags that can add extra volume to your hips.
A drop waist dress is a flattering and stylish choice for pear-shaped women. Keep these tips in mind when shopping for your next dress to feel confident and beautiful.
Dresses for Athletic Shapes
If you have an athletic body shape, you probably have a toned and muscular frame. Choosing the right dress can help accentuate your best features and make you feel confident. Here are some tips to keep in mind when shopping for dresses:
Look for bodycon dresses: Bodycon dresses hug your curves and show off your toned physique. They are a great option if you want to highlight your figure.
Consider wrap dresses: Wrap dresses cinch at the waist and create a flattering silhouette. They are perfect for highlighting your athletic figure while still looking feminine.
Try midi-length dresses: Midi-length dresses are a great choice for athletic body shapes. They highlight your toned legs and are a more conservative option for those who prefer not to show too much skin.
Experiment with bold prints and colors: Athletic body shapes can carry off bold prints and bright colors with ease. Don’t be afraid to experiment with patterns and shades that showcase your vibrant personality.
Accentuate your shoulders: A halter neckline draws attention to your shoulders and arms, which can help create the illusion of curves for athletic body types.
Experiment with styles: Halter necklines come in a variety of styles, from casual to formal, and can be worn with different types of skirts or pants.
Consider layering: A halter top or dress can be layered with a blazer or jacket to add more structure and shape to your look.
When it comes to selecting a dress with a halter neckline, choose one that fits well around your bust and torso. Avoid styles that are too loose or too tight, as they can create an unflattering silhouette. Look for dresses with details like ruching or draping that can help add more dimension and shape to your body.
A two-piece dress is a great option for athletic body types, as it can highlight your toned midriff and abs. When choosing a two-piece dress, look for one that has a high-waisted skirt to accentuate your waistline. The top should be fitted and can be cropped or not, depending on your comfort level.
One of the benefits of a two-piece dress is that you can mix and match the top and skirt with other pieces in your wardrobe. You can also experiment with different textures, patterns, and colors. Try pairing a crop top with a flowy maxi skirt for a boho-inspired look, or opt for a matching set in a bold, bright hue for a fun, playful vibe.
When accessorizing a two-piece dress, keep in mind that the outfit itself is already making a statement. Opt for simple, understated accessories like delicate jewelry, a small clutch, and classic pumps or sandals.
|Flattering: A two-piece dress can show off your toned midriff and waistline.||Exposure: If you’re uncomfortable showing skin, a two-piece dress may not be the best option for you.||Color: Consider experimenting with bold hues or mixing and matching complementary colors for a unique look.|
|Versatile: A two-piece dress can be worn together or as separates, making it a versatile addition to your wardrobe.||Fit: Finding a two-piece dress that fits your body type can be a challenge, especially if you have a unique shape.||Accessories: Keep accessories simple and understated, as the dress itself is already a statement piece.|
|Experimentation: With a two-piece dress, you can experiment with different textures, patterns, and styles to find what works best for you.||Not Formal: Two-piece dresses are generally considered casual or semi-formal, so they may not be appropriate for all occasions.||Shoes: Choose shoes that complement the style of your two-piece dress, whether it’s a strappy sandal or classic pump.|
If you have an athletic body type, you may want to consider a column dress. This style dress is simple and sleek, without a lot of extra fabric or embellishments that can overwhelm your figure.
A column dress can be either long or short and is usually made from a soft, flowy fabric that drapes nicely over your body. This type of dress can also be paired with a statement necklace or earrings to add some visual interest to your outfit.
Another great thing about a column dress is that it’s versatile and can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. You can wear it to a wedding or formal event with heels and statement jewelry, or dress it down with sandals and a denim jacket for a casual weekend brunch.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the most common body shapes?
Before deciding what wedding dress best suits your body shape, it is important to know your body shape. The most common body shapes are pear, apple, hourglass, rectangle, and inverted triangle. Each shape has its own characteristics and dress styles that will flatter it best.
How can I determine my body shape?
There are a few ways to determine your body shape. One way is to measure your waist, hips, and bust and compare the measurements to determine your body shape. Another way is to look in the mirror and identify the areas of your body that are wider or narrower than others. You can also use online body shape calculators to help you determine your body shape.
What wedding dress styles are best for a pear-shaped body?
If you have a pear-shaped body, it is best to choose a wedding dress that accentuates your upper body while drawing attention away from your lower body. A-line, ball gown, and empire waist dresses are great choices for pear-shaped bodies. These styles will balance out your proportions and highlight your natural curves.
What wedding dress styles are best for an athletic body?
For those with an athletic body shape, it is best to choose a wedding dress that creates curves and adds feminine touches. Dresses with ruffles, pleats, or embellishments on the bodice or skirt can add curves to your figure. Dresses with a sweetheart neckline or a ball gown silhouette can also create a feminine hourglass shape.
What wedding dress styles are best for a petite body?
For a petite body, it is best to choose a wedding dress that elongates your figure. A sheath or column dress is a great choice for a petite body. These dresses will create a lengthening effect and make you appear taller. Dresses with a high waistline or a deep V-neckline can also elongate your figure and make you appear taller.